How can I cope? SJT Video on resistance to wounds

Safest Place

This follow up Sloppy Joe Time video continues to address what to do when your spouse resists looking at his/her wounds. Last week’s video unpacked the first two suggestions and today’s video gives two more vital steps in the effort to “cope.”

The emphasis is on creating a safe zone for your wounded spouse to come towards you. I hope you’ll click on the video below to find out just how to do that . . .


What have you noticed helps your spouse to feel safe enough to come towards you?


What hinders or trips you up from creating that “safe zone” in your marriage?


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If you’d like to view the video at Messy Marriage’s Youtube channel or view some of the other Sloppy Joe Time videos, click here. And I’d love it if you’d subscribe to the channel while you’re there!


Linking up with – Marriage Mondays,  Making Your Home Sing,  Unforced Rhythms,  Sunday Stillness,  Sharing His Beauty  and  Playdates with God

  • Beth, I’m guessing that if I clam up, sit quiet, and stop trying to orchestrate the situation, my man will feel more comfortable in opening up. Shutting up is the big key here. And dropping the control freak tendencies wouldn’t be a bad idea either, huh?
    Love to you, friend. Thanks for walking us through some really substantial stuff each week. Best part of my Sunday afternoon is right here in this place …

    • Your comments here on Sunday afternoons are so sweet, Linda! You warm me all the way from your snowy patch of New England. I hope that I can send you back my own warm thoughts as well as a few of our warm breezes of late (it’s been up in the 60’s and 70’s this weekend here in the St. Louis area! Yippee!). And yes, “shutting up” allows the Lord to speak through our closed mouths and open hearts. 🙂 Hugs to you, my sweet friend!

      • 60s and 70s?

        • Yup! And that was after it was around 10 degrees on Thursday! It’s been quite a roller coaster here in our neck of the woods–not that I’m complaining! 😉

  • Andrew Budek-Schmeisser

    Beth, this is marvelous. i think you hit all the key points.

    And now for transparency and personal honesty. I hate it, but if it helps one other person, it’s worth it.

    My wife does not need me to be a safe place. I’m gonna die, and she’s moving on. She’s got someone else to be safe with. I’m a patient.

    And there’s no safe place for me. A kind of professional courtesy, at best. At worst, irritation and impatience.

    It isn’t fun, and it isn’t what I wanted…but it’s real, and no amount of bellyaching is going to change it. It can’t be negotiated away – all I might achieve is a simulacrum, where she’s agreeing to play a role. No, thanks.

    So I have to be a harder man than I ever have, and even more ruthless – with myself. There is no soft place, so I have to subscribe to the Roman dictum – “The only hope of the doomed is not to hope for safety”.

    My saving grace, if you can call it that, is that I’m trained to this, professionally. Some things you have to do in places best un-named, you don’t need a heart. You need a mission, a solid moral compass, and self-control.

    The nightmares come later, of course.

    But for some – for me, now – that’s life. It’s now MY choice, to be kind, or to be bitter. To hold fast to grace, in whatever form, or to dissolve into self-pity.

    Marriage is never perfect, but I chose the vows, and I still chose them, unto death.

    Yes, I might lean into Jesus, but He seems to be busy elsewhere, and that’s OK. It’s a big world, and a lot of people can’t cope. He needs to be with them.

    Do what You need to, JC. I got this.

    • Thanks for the encouragement, Andrew. I know that your situation is quite different than the vast majority of couples. And I can see that “being a soft place” for your spouse would be an almost impossible task, given your condition. For you, my friend, I feel these challenges do not necessarily apply. BUT, with that said, I do feel as if you’re short-changing the power, presence and grace that God can have in your life as well. I am not saying He will take the physical pain away, but I do think He has more than enough strength and ability to meet your needs as well as the needs of the world. My God is that kind of God–able to reach out to every person’s need and meet it with precision and magnificence. I pray every day, not just for your physical state, but that you would feel His comfort and grace lifting you up. If Christ was able to endure the horrors of the cross, I think He can handle your agony as well, my friend. Hugs to you!

  • So glad you are such a cheerleader for marriage, Beth. l love your little video caption that says “support paves the way for perspective!” So true. I think some of our best marriage moments have been when we’ve been able to support each other thru a difficult day or a difficult ministry decision. Being a good listener, praying for one another and just being there to cheer each other on in this crazy life is such a great way to work as a team. And when that team is on the outs…I think many couples need to look not only vertically to the Lord for healing, but externally for some great biblical counseling and support. We have not had to do this in our own marriage, thankfully, but I have seen it work so many wonders for others. It’s important to seek help when you need it. So glad you are able to pull back the curtains on some of these dark issues. Good stuff friend! 🙂

  • Beth, I love your videos and the points you make here. Great job, as always. Our partner needs to feel safe before they can open up and share their feelings. And we need to be ready to actively listen to what they have to say without anger or judgement. I love that you also mention life coaching as an option. It can be so helpful for couples, both individually and together, and not as scary for some people as counseling. I’m so glad I added this skill to my resume. Serving the Lord and helping to save marriages is such a passion of mine, it is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done. I pray you are well, friend.

  • Yes, the home/marriage should be the safe place, that’s the main thing.